SSD recommendations

rhodevans

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 3, 2015
6
0
Hi Guys, I have an elderly 10,1 iMac 21", 8Gb ram 1TB HDD and was considering upgrading the HDD to a 1TB SSD. Does anybody have a recommendation on what manufacturer to use?

if anyone could give me any advice it would be appreciated.

Cheers

Rhod.
 

Maxx Power

macrumors 6502a
Apr 29, 2003
862
331
Hi Fishrrman, it's a late 2009
Nvidia MCP series chipset ? If so, your SSD options are very limited due to severe controller issues that leads to eventual data corruption. Google this issue and you will see what I mean.
 

tubeexperience

macrumors 68040
Feb 17, 2016
3,192
3,881
Nvidia MCP series chipset ? If so, your SSD options are very limited due to severe controller issues that leads to eventual data corruption. Google this issue and you will see what I mean.
Mac systems that are based on NVIDIA MCP79 and MCP89K chipsets (built ca. 2007-2011), as well as desktop motherboards using NVIDIA nForce 9 chipsets have this issue.
[doublepost=1476560279][/doublepost]
Nvidia MCP series chipset ? If so, your SSD options are very limited due to severe controller issues that leads to eventual data corruption. Google this issue and you will see what I mean.
http://blogs.helsinki.fi/tuylaant/2014/01/upgrading-old-macs-to-ssds/

MCP79 seems to have issues with SandForce controller.

Crucial MX300 should work fine since it uses Marvell controller.
 
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Maxx Power

macrumors 6502a
Apr 29, 2003
862
331
Mac systems that are based on NVIDIA MCP79 and MCP89K chipsets (built ca. 2007-2011), as well as desktop motherboards using NVIDIA nForce 9 chipsets have this issue.
[doublepost=1476560279][/doublepost]

http://blogs.helsinki.fi/tuylaant/2014/01/upgrading-old-macs-to-ssds/

MCP79 seems to have issues with SandForce controller.

Crucial MX300 should work fine since it uses Marvell controller.
That isn't strictly true. The widest spread non-working controller circa 2009-2010 was the SandForce controller. The MCP79 was also confirmed to not work with Samsung 830/840 series (I personally tried 830 and other forum members here attempted 840/840 Evo, from memory, we all ran into data corruption in days-months). I also tried Sandisk (Marvell controller) and various Intel (SandForce, but best firmware out of the SandForce bunch). We found out that only certain firmwares on Marvell controllers which had to do with the way it negotiates the SATA bus speed works with the MCP-series chipsets.

The ONLY solutions at the time that were confirmed working, without data corruption in a few months time (varies from 1 month or so to a few at the most) and without downlinking from SATA II to SATA I speeds were the Crucial M500s. I also personally used this series of SSD on Nvidia MCP-series chipsets with success. There has not been a comprehensive attempt to figure out which modern SSDs since 2009-2010 era that works with the Nvidia MCP-series (79 and 89) since then.

Here is a person struggling with a MODERN Crucial SSD (BX100):

https://www.ifixit.com/Answers/View/252469/Mac+Mini+only+runs+1.5+gigabit+on+SSD

Apparently Crucial lists the MX300/200 as a compatible drive, I would actually take that with a grain of salt, because Crucial used to list the BX-series as compatible with the Nvidia MCP-chipset Macs, until users found out the hard way that the BX-series weren't compatible (BX-series nolonger listed as compatible at Crucial.com either, still being sold).
 
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kschendel

macrumors 65816
Dec 9, 2014
1,026
322
I put a Mushkin Reactor into my iMac, and it's working fine. It's an Early 2009, though, and I don't know if you will have thermal sensor issues doing a straight swap.
 

Maxx Power

macrumors 6502a
Apr 29, 2003
862
331
I put a Mushkin Reactor into my iMac, and it's working fine. It's an Early 2009, though, and I don't know if you will have thermal sensor issues doing a straight swap.
That is really good to know. Can you please confirm that it has been working for a few months ? Very often, data corruption doesn't begin until a few months in. Also, can you check that the SSD is operating at SATA II (3Gbps) instead of SATA I (1.5Gbps) speeds ? Thank you!
 

Floris

macrumors 68020
Sep 7, 2007
2,381
1,451
Netherlands
Crucial has a hardware finder for iMac for RAM and SSD, macsales should give a good option as well. And ifixit has the videos on how to do it and option to buy the hardware needed (if any).
 

kschendel

macrumors 65816
Dec 9, 2014
1,026
322
The Mushkin (480 Gb) was installed in mid-July and it's definitely running at 3 Gbps. I have another Reactor (the 1 Tb version) in a Mac Pro that's been running since February with no issues; ext4 lifetime writes on that one is up around 4.5 Tb. I was going to add another SSD to the Mac Pro once I had the cash to put in an SM951 (PCIe) grade SSD, but the straight SATA II swap was enough of an improvement that I decided to spend the money on a new (32 inch) monitor instead.

The Reactors use a Silicon Motion SM2246 controller, not a Sandforce.
 

tubeexperience

macrumors 68040
Feb 17, 2016
3,192
3,881
The Mushkin (480 Gb) was installed in mid-July and it's definitely running at 3 Gbps. I have another Reactor (the 1 Tb version) in a Mac Pro that's been running since February with no issues; ext4 lifetime writes on that one is up around 4.5 Tb. I was going to add another SSD to the Mac Pro once I had the cash to put in an SM951 (PCIe) grade SSD, but the straight SATA II swap was enough of an improvement that I decided to spend the money on a new (32 inch) monitor instead.

The Reactors use a Silicon Motion SM2246 controller, not a Sandforce.
The Mushkin Enhanced Reactor has really great performance considering it's MLC drive.

What concerns me is that there are a lot of reviews of the drive failing a few months after purchase.
 

Maxx Power

macrumors 6502a
Apr 29, 2003
862
331
The Mushkin (480 Gb) was installed in mid-July and it's definitely running at 3 Gbps. I have another Reactor (the 1 Tb version) in a Mac Pro that's been running since February with no issues; ext4 lifetime writes on that one is up around 4.5 Tb. I was going to add another SSD to the Mac Pro once I had the cash to put in an SM951 (PCIe) grade SSD, but the straight SATA II swap was enough of an improvement that I decided to spend the money on a new (32 inch) monitor instead.

The Reactors use a Silicon Motion SM2246 controller, not a Sandforce.
Good to know, thanks!
 

rhodevans

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 3, 2015
6
0
Nvidia MCP series chipset ? If so, your SSD options are very limited due to severe controller issues that leads to eventual data corruption. Google this issue and you will see what I mean.
How do I find out if it the Nvidia chipset?
 

jav6454

macrumors P6
Nov 14, 2007
16,864
1,480
1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
Hi Guys, I have an elderly 10,1 iMac 21", 8Gb ram 1TB HDD and was considering upgrading the HDD to a 1TB SSD. Does anybody have a recommendation on what manufacturer to use?

if anyone could give me any advice it would be appreciated.

Cheers

Rhod.
Samsung has a proven track record on SSDs. If you want another vendor, look for SSDs with controllers that have proven track records, some controllers end up screwing you royally.
 

rhodevans

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 3, 2015
6
0
NVidia MCP79 AHCI:
Vendor: NVidia
Product: MCP79 AHCI
Link Speed: 3 Gigabit
Negotiated Link Speed: 3 Gigabit
Physical Interconnect: SATA
Description: AHCI Version 1.20 Supported

So would you suggest the Crucial MX300 or a Samsung drive?
 

Maxx Power

macrumors 6502a
Apr 29, 2003
862
331
NVidia MCP79 AHCI:
Vendor: NVidia
Product: MCP79 AHCI
Link Speed: 3 Gigabit
Negotiated Link Speed: 3 Gigabit
Physical Interconnect: SATA
Description: AHCI Version 1.20 Supported

So would you suggest the Crucial MX300 or a Samsung drive?
Definitely not Samsung. Everything from Samsung 830, 840 and 850s have been demonstrated to be incompatible with the Nvidia chipset-equipped Macs.

Please try the Crucial MX300 (or the older M500 if you can find one, it is verified compatible with shipping firmware until 2014). This isn't guaranteed either. After you install the SSD, check if the SATA link speed is negotiated at SATA II, if it is at SATA I or it fluctuates between SATA I and II, then it is having issues with data error and may (in most cases) lead to data corruption. Sorry I can not guarantee compatibility.
 

kschendel

macrumors 65816
Dec 9, 2014
1,026
322
For what it's worth, that looks like the chipset in my iMac, so the Mushkin should work. I can't speak to the long term reliability; ask me again in 5 years...
 

Maxx Power

macrumors 6502a
Apr 29, 2003
862
331
For what it's worth, that looks like the chipset in my iMac, so the Mushkin should work. I can't speak to the long term reliability; ask me again in 5 years...
How long is the warranty from Mushkin anyway ? Isn't it 3 or 5 years ?